How to Create Content With the End Result in Mind

One of the most challenging aspects of content creation is breaking out of your bubble and developing content with the audience in mind. That statement may take you by surprise. After all, aren’t you always trying to reach your audience?

Yes and no.

We’re trying to tell our audience something. We have a message that we desperately want them to receive, and we’re so committed to delivering that message that we fail to see that we’re missing the mark.

Most of us follow a linear path from ideation through production, logically developing our content to achieve our goals. That’s the “creator brain” in action–doing the thing that makes sense and forging ahead. For example, let’s say you want to sell insurance policies. Logically you’d focus on finding insurance policy holders, right? And then building content that delivers your serious and grave message about the necessity of insurance.

Unsurprisingly, this method generates a lot of boring content that fails to reach the target audience…or anyone else for that matter.

By contrast, check out this video and imagine how a room full of creators came up with the idea:

They began with an emotional effect on the viewer. The ideation process began with the end results (I want someone to consider their life is worth insuring), and then worked backwards. Instead of the logical, linear instinct, this approach is visceral.

It doesn’t work to develop content centered around delivering a message and then layering an emotional moment on top. That will come across as forced and phony.

Content creation channels the energy of inspired artistry and careful craftsmanship. The artist can see the sculpture hidden within the block of marble. They can see the end result and the visceral, emotional response it will elicit from the viewer. But it takes the careful craftsman to chisel away at the stone to create the masterpiece.

As you think about your next piece of content, pause for a minute and think about the effect you want it to have on your viewer. If you can speak to an emotional core driver like the insurance ad above, you’ll create memorable content with staying power.

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